×
You will be redirected back to your article in seconds

Why Isn’t 2018 Album of the Year Nominee Lorde Performing at the Grammys?

For a Grammy nominee who isn’t performing at the Grammys, Lorde is certainly owning Grammy Week.

On Wednesday night she performed with Jack Antonoff at his fourth annual Ally Coalition benefit at New York’s Town Hall, where they played four songs: a sublime cover of Carly Rae Jepsen’s “Run Away With Me,” an amusing one of Roy Orbison’s “You Got It,” and two from her 2017 sophomore set “Melodrama,” which happens to be nominated for the big prize, Grammy Album of the Year. (Antonoff also shouted down a heckler who criticized Lorde’s decision to cancel a concert in Israel over the country’s policies toward Palestinians, but that’s a different story.) On Thursday she attended an A-list birthday party for new Columbia chief Ron Perry (who A&R’ed “Melodrama”) with manager Jonathan Daniel. And on Friday night she absolutely slayed “Silver Springs” — a Stevie Nicks song that, incredibly, was left off of “Rumors” due to space considerations — at the MusiCares tribute to Fleetwood Mac, bringing an intense physicality to the verses that contrasts with but also compliments Nicks’ sweeter, folkier take on the original.

It’s left many wondering why a charismatic young Grammy Album of the Year nominee who’s in town and has performed two out of the last three nights isn’t performing on the show. Sources close to the situation tell Variety that the Grammys approached Lorde about performing with other artists but not solo; one source says it was part of a tribute to the late Tom Petty involving his song “American Girl” (which would have been an odd fit for the New Zealand-born singer). Lorde declined.

That source added that the other Album of the Year contenders — all of whom are male — were offered solo spots performing songs from their respective nominated albums.

Last week Lorde’s mother, Sonja Yelich, tweeted a photo of a section of a New York Times article with the caption “this says it all”; the section reads: “Of the 899 people to be nominated for Grammy awards in the past six years, only nine per cent were women.”

Lorde was nominated for four Grammy Awards in 2014 and won two — Song of the Year and Best Pop Solo Performance — for her breakthrough song “Royals,” which she performed on the show that year (solo, with her band). She was 17 years old at the time.

Reps for the Grammys and Lorde did not immediately respond to Variety’s request for comment.

 

More Music

  • The Lonely Island Are Comically Plausible

    Concert Review: The Lonely Island Are Comically Plausible Pop-Rappers on First Tour

    A funny thing happened on the way to the Lonely Island’s first-ever, multi-city tour, which kicked off at Bonnaroo this past weekend. At their third stop Wednesday at the Met Philadelphia, the hip-hop comedy trio of Andy Samberg, Akiva Schaffer and Jorma Taccone proved they could parody rap-pop with comic plausibility and their own brand of musical [...]

  • Livenation AR Live stream

    Live Nation to Debut AR Live Stream at Music Midtown Festival

    Come September, Live Nation is set to begin streaming live events in augmented reality. The entertainment giant will debut live AR broadcasting at the Music Midtown festival in Atlanta, Georgia, where attendees will also be able to unlock filters and other AR effects. Live Nation announced the new initiative at the Cannes Lions festival Thursday, [...]

  • Elton John performing at Earls Court,

    Elton John Has a Message for Struggling LGBTQ Youth: 'Be Proud of Who You Are'

    Elton John isn’t at a loss for words when asked if he has a message for young LGBTQ people who are struggling with their sexuality or gender identity. In an exclusive interview with Variety at last month’s Cannes Film Festival, just hours before the world premiere of his long-in-the-works biopic “Rocketman,” John spoke candidly about the [...]

  • Frank Ocean

    What Happened to the Black Queer Music Revolution That Frank Ocean Almost Started?

    Seven years ago, Frank Ocean got us talking about a revolution — or at least hoping for one. On the eve of releasing “Channel Orange,” his groundbreaking 2012 debut studio album, the then-24-year-old alt-R&B singer-songwriter wrote an open letter on his Tumblr blog in which he revealed that his first love had been a man. [...]

  • Donald Glover Beyonce

    Beyoncé and Donald Glover Harmonize in 'Can You Feel the Love Tonight' Ad Preview

    Anyone who’s longed to hear Beyoncé and Donald Glover harmonizing got just enough to further whet the appetite in a first snippet of their version of “Can You Feel the Love Tonight?” that’s included in a new commercial for Disney’s upcoming “Lion King” remake. The TV spot lasts just 30 seconds, hardly time at all [...]

  • Pride Allies

    The Hollywood Allies Who Helped Protect, Advance the LGBTQ Community This Year

    Strong and proud as it is, the LGBTQ community’s fight for equality needs allies — from loving and accepting families to galvanized colleagues and corporations to the movie star you’ve never met calling for boycotts of a homophobic nation-state. Several of those queer supporters in Hollywood and music used the megaphones of social media, public [...]

  • Amazon Music

    Amazon Music Launches on Comcast's Xfinity X1 Set-Tops

    Amazon Music is rolling out on Comcast’s Xfinity X1 — the first pay-TV distribution deal for the ecommerce company’s music service. The cable operator’s addition of Amazon Music comes six months after it added Amazon Prime Video to the X1 lineup. Prime Video quickly became one of the most-used apps on the service, which prompted [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content